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Celtic linked with January move for teenage South African striker

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Celtic are reported to be on the trail of Luke Baartman.

The 17-year-old striker is in his breakthrough season with Cape Town Spurs with Celtic reported to be watching his progress closely.

Brendan Rodgers has recently been emphasising the need to bring in experienced players ahead of projects with the hoops squad badly bloated. Marco Tilio, Maik Nawrocki and Kwon Hyeok-Kyu were signed during the summer but left out of the Champions League squad, only Nawrocki has played this season but the Polish defender hasn’t been viewed since August.

A non-Asian striker would be very welcome in January but it is quite a stretch to see a teenager from South Africa taking over from Kyogo Furuhashi and Oh Hyeon-Gyu while they are away on international duty.

The Sun reports:

CELTIC are on the trail of South African wonderkid Luke Baartman.

The teen Cape Town Spurs striker made his Premier Division debut against Orlando Pirates in October and the Hoops are likely to face competition for his signature, including from the Premier League.

The 17-year-old, also attracting interest from major English clubs including Leeds, celebrated his first goal a fortnight ago against Kaiser Chiefs. Baartman’s rated one of the best prospects in the country.

The South Africa Under-17s starlet is still at school, but is being tipped for a huge future in the game.

Celtic’s recruitment team have been following his progress and have had representatives at matches. Cape Town Spurs were owned by Dutch giants Ajax until 2020, and are bottom of their top flight.

Baartman would be eligible to play in the Lowland League but there is no sign after three seasons that the sixth tier of Scottish football is developing first team ready players for Celtic.

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